The differences between pre-flop to post-flop strategies are enormous in online poker. All players will have to execute excellent strategies, both pre-flop and post-flop to be successful throughout the game. It’s important to note that pre-flop play has a monumental effect in how it effects post-flop play, which means that one strategy or tactic should complement the other in a single hand.
What Type of Player Am I?
It all really depends on the particular style of the player. Tight players usually prefer to play pre-flop as they like to enter a hand with strong hole cards, avoiding difficult decisions against multiple players at a later stage. Players who like to play strong hole cards aggressively usually don’t slow-play and prefer to end the action then, maintaining control.
In general, more experienced players prefer outwitting their opponents in post-flop play. Some players prefer to play a wider variety of hands more effectively and decide to play ‘small ball poker’. This refers to players who play more hands, play loose in nature and place small bets and raises. More opportunities are created for players to get creative in post-flop play, crafting well planned bluffs and trapping opponents.
Pre Flop Tactics
Exceptions will always be present in every poker situation, however, if you keep the following in mind when playing pre-flop poker, you will have a better chance at succeeding in the long-run.
- Avoid slow-playing
- Be aggressive with strong hole cards
- When raising, your default raise three to four times the big blind
- Watch your position - Start tight and loosen play in better positions
- Stay aware of opponents stack sizes
- Stay aware of body language
Post Flop Strategies
Solid post-flop strategies and consistency are two of the most important factors in building a positive bankroll and make a profit in online poker. The following are a couple of things to keep in mind when planning your post-flop strategies.
- Folding is important – When playing more hands and seeing more flops, every poker player, irrespective of their skill, will not win every hand they play. There’s no shame in folding. On the contrary, it’s wise to know when to cut your losses and prepare for the next hand.
- Avoid coin flips – If you plan on succeeding in post flop play, you should avoiding coin flips like the plague, especially if you’re stronger tactically than your opponents. Coin flips leave everything to chance and inevitably, sometimes, players will have you dominated. Put yourself in situations where you take advantage of your poker skills.
- Don’t be overly aggressive – Many people believe that to be the best at poker, players need to be aggressive and dominant in most situations. Aggression is good to have, however, aggression alone in poker will get players in trouble. It must be combines with timing, positioning and opponent reads. Being overly aggressive can leave players vulnerable to traps by attentive players.
There’s no written rule on what the balance should be between pre-flop and post-flop play. It depends on many factors, which include the situation, the skill level of your opponents, the blinds levels and your chip-stack, amongst other things. If you’re not certain of your strongest skills, practise, and keep track of how many hands you win pre-flop versus post-flop hands.